New Year, New Hopes & Dreams

I feel like it's bad luck if you don't make some sort of goals/resolutions for the new year, so here goes mine:

1. Practice my Italian - my sweet husband bought me Rosetta Stone Italian for Christmas. I can speak a few things, but not well enough to be able to teach our Lorenzo. And since I'll be home with him the most, it's important I gain a better knowledge of the language. My husband's generation is one of the last in his family that will still speak Italian, so we want to keep it going. 

2. Photography Lessons: Once our little one arrives, I'll be worse than the paparazzi, so I'd love to brush up on my photography skills and take some amazing shots.

3. Prep for Baby: I need to start reading anything on babies I can get my hands on over the next few months. This one is hilarious:
I also just finished designing Lorenzo's nursery! I'll share later this week.
4. Build our Home! This is one of the biggest goals for 2013. I'm excited to start, hopefully in February/March, but it's going to be quite stressful taking on this endeavor and having a baby at the same time. It's not too surprising though, we typically never do one thing at a time. Here's the front view so far!
5. Let Go of Work: I'm a super control freak when it comes to running our businesses and have a really hard time letting anyone else do my job. Problem is, I'm going to have the most important job in my life come May and I can't be two places at once. I need to learn to relinquish some of my responsibilities and I'll have slightly less stress moving forward.
6. Pursue my Boutique: I literally say this every year, that this is the year I'll open my store. And then I get so sucked in to my husbands' businesses, I just can't break away. Hence goal #5. I'm viewing the time away from work as my time to focus on what I truly want to do in my life.
7. Wedding Album: So embarassing, but I was married in 2010 and still never put together a wedding photo album. This NEEDS TO HAPPEN!
 I wish you all a happy, healthy, prosperous new year!

Letters to Lorenzo

I promised myself I wouldn't turn this into a baby blog, but really I was lying. I'm so excited about our baby, outfits and interior design pale in comparison. I got the idea for this post from Sarah Tucker at Fairytales Are True. I felt an immediate connection with her, not only because she is pregnant and about to have her little boy, but because I can relate to a lot of her viewpoints.

Letters to Lorenzo (yes, that's baby's name! Lorenzo Pietro after our grandfathers) is something I hope to refer back to for years to come. So here goes letter numero uno.

It's Christmas time Enzo! As much as we wish you were here to celebrate with us, we know you're in there gettin' all plump and cute for next year. Sorry, we will be dressing you in a Santa outfit so be prepared. I'm very curious if you enjoyed the christmas party we attended on Friday or if you were super annoyed I interrupted your slumber.  (we were at a party with a very loud band and baby kicked me the entire way home. He was either still dancing or extremely peeved with me) But there was nothing in the world like feeling you moving around. I smiled until I fell asleep that night. See you in there?

Thanks for being such a good little boy so far. I barely even know you're there. Merry Christmas baby! Just think, next year at this time, you'll be spoiled rotten by everyone you know :)

And Merry Christmas to all of you!

Hot Chocolate Bar

Last weekend, I hosted a hot chocolate party at our home and we had such a great time. I'm big into theme parties because I think they give a good excuse to get together. And really, hot chocolate is certainly a reason to get together. If you're hosting the holidays at your home, having a hot chocolate bar will definitely impress your guests and it's super easy to throw together. I'll share how:

Pick a bunch of toppings and put each in a matching bowl or dish. I used vases that I had since they all matched. My toppings included:
  • Toffee Bits
  • Crushed Peppermint Candy Canes
  • Cinnamon Chips
  • Sprinkles
  • Whipped Cream
  • Chocolate/Caramel Syrups
  • Wafers to stir
  • And of course marshmallows

I didn't just use any marshmallows, I took a risk and made them from scratch. Most successful risk ever. I thought for sure I would end up with a gross sticky disaster, but they are not hard at all! And once you go homemade, you never go back. I made vanilla, gingerbread, and peppermint. Click on the links for the recipes.

To make the hot chocolate, I decided to do both white and regular chocolate, it's easiest for a large group to make it in the crock pot. Here were the two recipes I used:

I also made these cute marshmallow sticks coated in melted chocolate and sprinkled with crushed peppermint and sprinkles. Also really easy to make!

I set up a table with cookies and all the toppings, added decorative accessories like fake snow, tags I cut out, and a cute little sign I designed and framed.

I also included marshmallow vodka for those who were allowed to drink. Me, no. Guests, yes. Had to be considerate!

I really have no idea how to make the sign a downloadable pdf, but here's the jpg version if you'd like to use it! I originally designed it in color, but my printer at home was being testy and kept printing it in purple. After multiple hormonal screams at it, I gave in and printed it in black and white. The paper is a brown paper bag style I bought at AC Moore:

And here's the dining room table I threw together at the last minute since the printer from hell took a long time to sort out:

Hope I've given lots of inspiration for your holiday party this year! Happy Holidays!!

Christmas Terrarium

Quick, you only have 4 more days!! Need something fast and DIY that doesn't look like it was made in a preschool class? A Christmas Terrarium is the perfect answer! Now I am no gardener, in fact, my thumb is slightly on the black side at times, but this is super easy and adorable. I was inspired to make one when I took a trip to Terrain in Glen Mills and saw all their gorgeous holiday planters.

I was not about to pay $65 for one (especially with the sort of black thumb I speak of), so I took a bunch of inspiration pics and made it myself:

First, gather your supplies. You will need:

  • Potting Soil (there is special terrarium soil that I did not buy. I used succulent soil I had in my basement. A possible answer to my blackish thumb)
  • Moss
  • Charcoal
  • Mini plants (I used a fern, mini pointsetta, and another terrarium plant I thought looked winterty)
  • Decorative accessories (I had mini pinecones from a potpourrie set, mini branches, and fresh holly berries that unfortunately do not live super long)
  • A glass container (any kind will work)

Line the bottom of the container with 1-2" of charcoal. This allows proper drainage of water since the container does not have holes:

Add the potting soil and arrange your plants how you'd like them:

Add the moss and arrange the decorative accessories:

And walah! I had fake snow that I sprinkled over the top to add an even more festive touch:

I've been watering it about once a week with a glass spray bottle and the fake snow stayed. And it's still alive!! It's a gift that's super festive for the holiday, but still looks good into the winter season. It only took me 20 minutes to put it all together and I only had to purchase about $25 worth the materials since I had some stuff at home. Happy planting!

Our Baby Is A...

Last Monday, we got to find out what our little miracle is going to be! And it's a....


I have to say I thought for sure there was a girl in there, but that's not what our little guy wanted! And to be completely honest, I had really wanted a girl in our male dominated family. I was a little upset after we left the ultrasound appointment, but quickly got over it. There's nothing that can be done or changed, little baby boy is coming in May regardless. Truthfully, how could I be upset that we're having a baby?? Maybe he's meant to be something great in this world someday and that's why he's a he.

Also, if my son is even half the son my husband is to his parents, we will be truly blessed. And when he grows up to be a husband to his wife like my husband is to me, there's a little girl out there in this world who is in for an amazing life. Once he becomes a father, if he's inherited anything from my father, his children will have an amazing and kind man in their lives someday. I absolutely cannot wait to me our son in 4 short months!

In the meantime, nursery planning is in full swing. Here are some great inspiration photos:
Bill & Guiliana's baby boy' room

Lay Baby Lay
And my wardrobe is getting smaller and smaller. I'm loving these prego moms' style:

My belly is growing very slowly, but I'm not going to complain because it will very shortly become gigantor.

Later this week, I'll share my homemade Christmas terrarium with you all as well as my recent Hot Chocolate party I hosted!

A Fashionable Interior: Light Blue + Emerald

UPDATE: Just in, emerald is named by Pantone as color of the year for 2013! And how could it not, so so gorg...

How fun and unexpected is the color combo of light blue and emerald? Even now for the holidays, it would be a fun twist on tradition!


Bracelet & Sweater at J.Crew


Dear J.Crew,

Why do you not have a maternity line? If you did, I would be your biggest customer. Also, you would then be able to make more money, which I'm sure is not something you need, but would appreciate. If you ever decide to get into it, give me a buzz and I'd be happy to help.


Getting more and more preggo with nothing to wear